Look out, Downtown Binghamton. Food trucks are coming.
Binghamton isn’t widely considered a premier food hub, but the Downtown community is on its way to becoming a flourishing foodie town with growth from local investors and student residents. Popular local classics like Lost Dog Café and Burger Mondays can only excite our palates for so long. New restaurants are beginning to reface the crumbling storefronts of Binghamton’s past, and the nationwide phenomenon of food trucks is accelerating growth at new speeds.
Often perched on the corner of Court and Hawley Streets, Sauced, a new Halal food truck, dishes out flavor-packed meals at incredibly low prices. Middle Eastern food is one of the most popular foods served on trucks — people stand in line wrapped around the corner at NYC’s finest carts at all hours of the night. For Halal snobs that live in the Big Apple, this is no Halal Guys, but it is an adequate replacement when stumbling home at night. One platter can satisfy that craving. You’ll be able to buy most Sauced items for $6 or under, and you’ll be full and ready to head straight back to the bars.
College students usually have three main criteria in mind when deciding what to eat. First off, it’s got to be cheap — college students have tight budgets. No one wants to blow their State Street fund on food. Secondly, it’s got to be quick. Trying to catch a bus? Slept that extra 15 minutes before class? We need food fast.
The final factor is the food itself. It’s got to be tasty. Food trucks, which have begun to settle on Downtown street corners, deliver on all gears. They provide a service that has long been delegated to the fast food industry: dishing out full plates of food for less than $10. The difference is that food trucks have found a creative business model that brings a homemade feeling to the food-on-the-go movement.
Jessica Hoffman, a junior majoring in English, thinks that food trucks will help transform the food scene Downtown.
“They’ll draw a crowd at night and will get more people to visit Downtown and walk around and see what else Binghamton has to offer,” Hoffman said.
Food trucks are here to stay. With the new one-year pilot program, more and more carts will aim to satisfy a demanding student body. Mad Man Sammies, a sandwich and fries spot, will soon offer more affordable dishes through their creative creations. Fry-topped sandwiches and donuts covered in cereal are just the beginning of their mad inventions.
Food is the key to many hearts. Jump-starting the Downtown revival with food trucks will satisfy not only stomachs, but also Binghamton’s need for more food options and culture.